Home < Degrees < Medical Genetics

Medical Genetics

Administrative Unit:Pediatrics and Medical Genetics
College/School: School of Medicine and Public Health
Admitting Plans:M.S.
Degrees Offered:M.S.


The University of Wisconsin–Madison offers an M.S. degree in medical genetics specifically designed to train genetic counselors. The training program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Council of Genetic Counseling (ACGC). The first class of genetic counselors matriculated in 1976 making our program one of the most experienced in the United States.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Genetic Counselor Training Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is to educate competent and compassionate genetic counselors who will successfully enter the genetic counseling workforce and be lifelong learners and leaders in the field.

To fulfill this mission, the program provides students with a rigorous, comprehensive curriculum that includes:

  1. A diverse clinical experience that fosters interdisciplinary relationships.
  2. Relevant research opportunities that encourage critical thinking and contribute to the knowledge base of the profession.
  3. An environment that promotes socially responsible practice.


The genetic counseling curriculum at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health in Madison is a carefully structured sequence of courses and clinical practicums scheduled over approximately 21 months. Courses include, among others, Clinical Genetics; Cancer Genetics; Human Cytogenetics and Molecular Diagnostics; Interviewing and Counseling for the Genetic Counselor; Medical Genetic Counseling Research Seminar; and Contemporary Professional Issues. Most courses are designed specifically for genetic counseling students and taught by  genetic counselors who are certified by the American Board of Genetic Counselors, and by clinical geneticists who are certified by the American Board of Medical Genetics. Clinical experiences, which span all four semesters of academic residence, occur in a variety of settings, including pediatric, oncology, prenatal, metabolic, inherited arrhythmias and others. The clinic rotations are supervised by certified genetic counselors and/or clinical geneticists.


Acceptance for admission to the medical genetics M.S. program requires approval by the Graduate School and by the Genetic Counselor Training Program Admissions Committee. Students should have a strong background in biology, basic genetics, biochemistry, and one semester of calculus or statistics (the latter is preferred). Please see the program website below for a complete list of admissions requirements.

For more information: Genetic Counselor Training Program, Room 3331500 Highland Avenue, Madison WI 53705; 608-262-9722; reiser@pediatrics.wisc.edu; www.med.wisc.edu/education/graduate-programs/genetic-counseling/main/26910.